JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) – A Jonesboro woman said she's breathing a sigh of relief after her personal information was stolen, and used to make thousands of dollars in purchases. Teresa Booth said a woman stole her purse from her car, and then went on a huge shopping spree. The suspect, Corrie Lenard, has a lengthy criminal record dating back to 2000, according to the 30th Judicial District of Tennessee at Memphis.
"I felt very violated that she got into my locker, into my gym bag and took my belongings. Then went out to my car, and she could have very well stolen my car, but she didn't," said Booth.
Booth filed a report with Jonesboro Police in late 2011, when she said someone stole her car keys at a local gym. According to the police report, the suspect then opened Booth's car door and took her purse. Inside the purse were several credit cards, a driver's license, debit cards and her children's shot records.
"I had one of the clickers that opened you door, so she knew which vehicle it was. She opened up my car and stole my purse out of there," said Booth.
Booth claims the suspect, who police identified as Corrie Lenard, racked up thousands of dollars in charges at stores in Jonesboro and Memphis. She reported $3,800 worth of purchases in Jonesboro before spending $1,500 in fraudulent charges in Memphis.
Region 8 News featured the surveillance video in Crimestoppers in December of 2011. Booth and another woman were victims in the case.
"When she was in Sears, I saw it on video, she had my purse with her and she was going through my credit cards," said Booth, who called her husband as soon as she learned her keys were missing. "I called him so he could start cancelling credit cards and all that, because I didn't have any of my cards. I didn't have any of my numbers, so I called him so he could cancel all those cards and as he was speaking to them, they were saying that the person that stole my credit cards and stuff was at Sears charging."
Booth said purchases were also made at Kohl's and JC Penney.
"You should never keep your social security cards in your purse, and normally I don't, but I had taken them (kids) to the doctor and so I did have all the cards in the purse from the day before. I just didn't take them out," said Booth.
Booth now is signed up for a credit monitoring service, which costs her about $30 a month. It offers protection to both her kids, as well. She said her children would likely have to keep the service for their lives. She said her concern is that the information stolen is still in someone else's hands.
"My concern is everyone else that may have it now too, because if she can't use it, then maybe she has sold it to someone," said Booth.
Booth did the right thing.
"I felt very violated. I was angry. I had to spend all afternoon calling all the credit card companies and cancelling those. I was really trusting, and so when I left my keys there, which I will never do, I keep them with me when I go to the gym now. I keep them on me," said Booth, who now has an Identity Theft Passport by the attorney general's office.
"I keep it in my wallet, that way if I ever get pulled over and someone has used my identity to commit a crime. If there are warrants out on me that are fraudulent, then that's just protection for me so hopefully I would not go to jail," said Booth, who has a new perspective of identity theft.
Click here to read more about identity theft from the Federal Trade Commission.
"I see people, and I do tell them if I see someone that just leaves (keys) there, I've seen wallets in the locker room at the gym, and I think man, and I don't know whose it is or I would tell them, I would advise you to put that somewhere. Put it in a locker with a lock on it," said Booth.